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Preds sign goaltender Atte Engren…

I don’t know where they’re going to put them all but the Nashville Predators have signed yet another goaltender.

David Poile announced today that the Preds have signed their ninth round pick in the 2007 draft Atte Engren.

The 22-year old is the second goaltender signed in the three days and the third draft pick signed as well. 2008 selections Anders Lindbäck (the other netminder) inked his deal officially on Wednesday and defenseman Roman Josi‘s contract was officially announced earlier today.

According to the official press release, Engren is “is fresh off backstopping TPS Turku to the 2010 Finnish Elite League (SM-Liiga) title,” meaning both players signed today are coming off championship seasons in their respective leagues. Josi led his SC Bern club to regular season titles and a league championship before competing last month in the World Championships for his native Switzerland.

Unlike Lindbäck’s and Josi’s press releases, Engren’s mentions nothing about the expectation of him to play in North American next season. A key sign for depth chart purposes as Nashville was running out of room as far as goaltenders are concerned.

With Pekka Rinne starting for the parent club, barring an off-season signing, Mark Dekanich and Chet Pickard will vie for the starting job with the AHL-affiliate Milwaukee Admirals and the back-up job in Music City. Jeremy Smith, who recently won a Kelly Cup with the ECHL affiliate Cincinnati Cyclones, will probably back-up the starter in Milwaukee. Which leaves Lindbäck and Engren.

One  must assume that, barring an upset in training camp, Lindbäck is slated for the Cyclones and Engren – just based on the fact that the line of “he is expected to… play his first North American season in 2010-11” is omitted from his press release – is assumed to stay in Europe for another season.